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Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions (ACASA)

Created: 12/21/2010 - Updated: 5/08/2019

Photo attributed to Matthieu Godbout. Incorporated here under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. No endorsement by licensor implied.

Summary

The Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions (ACASA) Project is a partnership among the provincial governments of Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick, and regional stakeholders including nonprofits, tribal governments, and industry. ACASA applied for and received a grant from Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) to build a collaborative effort to address regional climate change impacts. The partnership set goals and developed over 20 local projects to build the region’s capacity and resilience to climate change.

Background

Atlantic Canadian Provincial governments met in May 2008 in New Brunswick to discuss a partnership approach to addressing adaptation in the region and develop a strategy for regional adaptation efforts. The provinces of Atlantic Canada have vast coastlines which are already being affected by climate change-related effects, including storms of increased intensity and frequency, flooding, erosion, and saltwater intrusion.

The ACASA partnership will increase the region’s resilience to climate impacts by increasing organizational capacity and coordination of planning and management, improving information used in planning by initiating targeted research and monitoring plans to track impacts, and supporting improved natural resource management that includes future conditions.

Implementation

In 2008, NRCan announced a federal funding initiative, the Regional Adaptation Collaborative (RAC), to support regional collaboration on adaptation efforts. The three-year, $30 million grant intiative was created to support six regional adaptation collaboratives and catalyze coordinated and sustained regional adaptation planning. The RACs are charged with addressing climate change impacts affecting the region, focusing on those impacts addressed in From Impacts to Adaptation: Canada in a Changing Climate, a research report produced by NRCan.

At a May 2008 meeting, the provincial governments created the Atlantic Canada Climate Change Adaptation Strategy, which addressed the major climate concerns for the region, distinct action priorities, and an accountability/governance structure for the partnership. The information hammered out in the spring meetings laid the foundation for the Atlantic provincial governments’ letter of interest to NRCan’s RAC grant initiative in the fall of 2008. The Atlantic Provinces and their partners submitted a full proposal, which was accepted in September 2009. The project is expected to conclude in 2012.

The ACASA RAC has laid out a number of tasks and deliverables to achieve the goals of the project. Challenges arise from the enormous size of the project and number of partners and moving pieced involved. While the number of partners and complexity of communication and coordination between those partners present problems, this program will greatly advance the region’s adaptation efforts.

Outcomes and Conclusions

ACASA laid out a number of tasks, outcomes, and deliverables to help partners integrate adaptation into their work and become more prepared for climate change. The partnership will create over 25 community adaptation projects across the Atlantic Provinces. The community adaptation projects will be supported by ACASA and will used as model projects for future regional efforts. Some of these projects include risk and vulnerability assessments related to infrastructure, sea level rise and erosion, groundwater quality and quantity, inland flooding, and surface and wastewater.

Examples of expected deliverables include:

  1. Model adaptation by-laws for municipalities;
  2. Recommended adaptation options related to emergency services, land use planning, and infrastructure design; and
  3. A community toolkit/workbook, including:
    • Overview of tools available to communities
    • Community vulnerability assessments
    • Regional climate information
    • Case studies
    • Background material to help communities with decision making

The region will also have gained invaluable information to help in future adaptation efforts such as improved environmental models (flood, groundwater), LiDAR data, and extensive vulnerability information for the region. The funding provided by the RAC grant will allow the provincial governments of the partnership to prepare and integrate future climate conditions into management and other processes to become more resilient to global climate change.

Status

Updated December 2010

Citation

Hitt, J. (2010). Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions (ACASA) [Case study on a project of the New Brunswick Department of Environment, Prince Edward Island Department of Environment, Energy and Forestry, Nova Scotia Environment, and Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Environment and Conservation]. Product of EcoAdapt's State of Adaptation Program. Retrieved from CAKE: http://www.cakex.org/case-studies/atlantic-climate-adaptation-solutions-... (Last updated December 2010)

Project Contacts

Nova Scotia Environment focuses on climate change, protecting our environment and advancing our ambitious environmental goals.

Within the Department of Environment, Energy and Forestry, a committed staff works for the preservation of Prince Edward Island’s natural capital, the cultivation of Island-based energy resources and the promotion of sustainable development in our home province.

The Department of Environment and Conservation is responsible for the protection and enhancement of the environment, management of the province’s wildlife, inland fish, water, parks, and Crown land resources. The Department is also leading Government’s response to climate change and the Sustainable Development initiatives.

Keywords

Scale of Project: 
Regional / Subnational
Sector Addressed: 
Agriculture
Conservation / Restoration
Fisheries
Forestry
Rural / Indigenous Livelihoods
Tourism / Recreation
Transportation / Infrastructure
Water Resources
Wildlife
Target Climate Changes and Impacts: 
Air temperature
Biodiversity
Economics
Erosion
Fishery harvest
Flooding
Habitat extent
Infrastructure damage
Landslides
Precipitation
Public safety threats
Salinization / Saltwater intrusion
Sea level rise
Species of concern
Storms or extreme weather events
Tourism
Water quality
Water supply
Water temperature
Climate Type: 
Temperate
Subpolar
Type of Adaptation Action/Strategy: 
Natural Resource Management / Conservation
Incorporate future conditions into natural resources planning and policies
Capacity Building
Design or reform institutions
Create new institutions
Increase organizational capacity
Coordinate planning and management
Invest in / Enhance emergency services planning and training
Increase / Improve public awareness, education, and outreach efforts
Conduct vulnerability assessments and studies
Sociopolitical Setting: 
Urban
Rural
Suburban
Industrial

Related Resources

Atlantic Canada Climate Change Adaptation Strategy

Photo attributed to Gérald Tapp. Incorporated here under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. No endorsement by licensor implied.

Case Study
Sector Addressed: 
Conservation / Restoration
Disaster Risk Management
Fisheries
Forestry
Policy
Rural / Indigenous Livelihoods
Transportation / Infrastructure
Water Resources
Summary: 

The Atlantic Governments from the Council of Atlantic Environment Ministers joined together in May 2008 to collaborate on a regional climate change adaptation strategy. The strategy outlines a framework for future collaboration on climate change adaptation management plans and decision-making.

Sector Addressed: 
Disaster Risk Management